This week, another airdrop controversy has sent the crypto community into havoc. Omnichain interoperability protocol LayerZero recently announced its ZRO Token launch alongside an Airdrop for its community. Related Reading: Trump-Inspired Memecoins Crash 30% After Rumors Of Trump’s Official Token Launch However, investors were shocked when the protocol announced the new ‘Proof-of-Donation’ mechanism. The token’s price has dropped over 20% after launching.  LayerZero Faces Backlash For Token Airdrop  On June 14, the LayerZero Foundation took X to tease an upcoming airdrop. That day, Bryan Pellegrino, the co-founder and CEO of LayerZero Labs, shared the key details of the airdrop. The CEO revealed a 1 billion ZRO tokens supply and the community would directly receive 23.8% of them. He explained that 8.5% of the community-allocated tokens would be distributed on the first day, while the rest would be given throughout the following 36 months. In May, the protocol announced its anti-Sybil measures for the upcoming token distribution. The measures include a self-reporting system for Sybil accounts, which offered 15% of the intended allocation to the addresses that report itself. Additionally, LayerZero created a bounty hunter program. Despite this, the protocol received some backlash for its distribution. Some users believe an 8.5% distribution on the first day was too low. Others felt like their allocated tokens didn’t match their transaction volume. An x user shared he received 39.28 ZRO despite being among the top 0.13% LazerZero users. As a result, many compared the ZRO airdrop to zkSync’s one.   Last week, the crypto community slammed Ethereum’s Zero-Knowledge Layer-2 scaling solution zkSync ahead of its ZK token airdrop. At the time, investors expressed frustration with the token allocation and lack of anti-Sybil filtering. From Hero To ZRO?  Despite the comparison to zkSync, it wasn’t until Thursday that the backlash intensified. Before the airdrop, LayerZero Foundation announced its new claiming mechanism, ‘ Proof-of-Donation.’ Per the post, users must donate $0.1 in USDC, USDT, or ETH per token to claim their ZRO allocation. The donations will go directly to the Protocol Guild, a collective funding mechanism for Ethereum developers. LayerZero Foundation estimated that the new mechanism will generate up to $18.5 million in donations. Additionally, it offered to match all donations up to $10 million. The protocol’s community quickly expressed their disagreement with the news.  One user called it a “Pay to Claim” airdrop, stating that “if there was a ‘milking your users’ Olympics, LayerZero would take the gold.” Another user found the timing disingenuous, as the announcement was made soon before the airdrop. Many investors saw the “mandatory” nature of the donation as a slap in the face. Moreover, some consider the new claiming mechanism a “tax” instead of a donation. Related Reading: Curve (CRV) Bounces 40% From All-Time Low As Whales Go On Shopping Spree Pellegrino addressed the criticism of X, stating that nobody is forced to donate. He added that users are not entitled to the tokens: If you don’t want to donate… simply don’t claim. This is not something you own, it’s something being offered. As of this writing, ZRO has gone from $4.79 to $3.39, representing a 22% drop in four hours. Featured Image from Unsplash.com, Chart from TradingView.com
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